July 22, 2011: A day of records

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:56 PM GMT on July 23, 2011

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The crest of the extreme heat wave of July 2011 has passed, although temperatures are still going to be dangerously hot in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast today. New York City (Central Park) will reach 100° again, as well as Philadelphia and possibly Washington Dulles. Heat index values could surpass the 110° mark today, and excessive heat warnings are in effect from New York City to South Carolina, as well as a large portion of the Central United States. Yesterday, the heat index soared past 120° in Wilmington, DE (124), Easton, MD (125), Annapolis, MD (120) and Atlantic City, NJ (122), among others. A more complete list of Friday's heat index extremes can be found here.

Numerous records fell yesterday as far north as Maine. There were plenty of daily records to talk about, but here are some of the noteworthy all-time record high temperatures:

Newark, NJ: 108° (old record was 105° set in 2001)
Washington Dulles, DC: 105° (old record was 104° on multiple dates)
Bridgeport, CT: 103° (ties the old record set in 1957)
Hartford, CT: 103° (old record was 102° set on multiple dates)
New Haven, CT: 102° (old record was 101° set in 1926)

Baltimore hit 106°, one degree shy of their all-time high record which was set in 1936. New York City (Central Park) set a daily record of 104°, which was 2 degrees shy of their 106° all-time high record, which was also set in 1936. More on the record-setting year of 1936 in yesterday's blog from Jeff. Two notable all-time record high minimums were also set yesterday: 84° in New York (Central Park) and 86° in Newark, NJ.

Our weather historian, Christopher C. Burt, keeps track of 303 select stations in the U.S. with long standing record histories. So far this summer, seven of these have broken or tied their all-time maximum temperature records. Some of these were long-standing:

• Amarillo, TX 111° (1892)
• Dodge City, KS 110° (1874 tied)
• Newark, NJ 108° (1893)
• D.C. Dulles 105° (1962)
• Tallahassee, Fl 105° (1883)
• Hartford, CT 103° (1885)
• New Haven, CT 102° (1780)

The last summer to have more all-time high records than this year was 2002, which set 9. Christopher C. Burt estimates that yesterday probably rates in the top five hottest days on record for the mid-Atlantic states (Washington D.C. to Boston).

Invest 90L


Satellite imagery of NHC Invest 90L this morning.

Invest 90L is looking ragged on satellite as it makes its way across the Caribbean islands. While this wave looked ripe for eventual development earlier this week, it has really taken a turn for the worse as it moved across the Main Development Region of the North Atlantic. Today, low level circulation is could favorably be described as less than moderate, and almost nonexistent at higher levels. Today, not one of the global models I've looked at (ECMWF, NOGAPS, CMC, UKMET, or GFS) develop 90L, but they are coming into better agreement that the wave's track will be across the Caribbean islands and into the Gulf of Mexico, rather than up the east coast of Florida. This could be one of the reasons the models are not suggesting development—too much land interaction, not enough time over open warm waters. However, its hard to say that this wave will not show some signs of improvement when it reaches the Gulf. Water will be toasty, moisture will be relatively high, and wind shear will remain incredibly low. Today the National Hurricane Center is giving this wave a 20% chance of development over the next 48 hours. My forecast has been the same for the past two days, right around 20% chance of development over the lifetime of the wave.

Thanks to our weather historian Christopher C. Burt for some useful information on heat waves and yesterday's records. I'll have another blog on Monday.

Angela

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I don't know if it will be all that slow to get a little more organized. The land interaction could be a big problem.

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i be back in time for the two
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90L is a wait in see game
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Quoting TxHurricanedude11:
they could be aggressive but it shows development particularly the GFDL which is pretty good with systems in the past.


The GFDL is ok once you get a closed low. At this stage of 90L I wouldn't place too much reliance on either the GFDL or HWRF.
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Quoting kmanislander:


Hi Levi,

The action is picking up fairly quickly now. With all the crazy weather world wide who knows what we may see this year. I was in Boston yesterday and it felt like an oven.

July has been quite active in the tropics for what is generally a fairly quiet month historically and this may not bode well for the rest of the season.


I agree. The models show the wave train becoming active and aimed at the Caribbean and southern U.S. during the next couple weeks. Regardless of whether any of these next few waves develop, this pattern, if it lasts, may become ugly later in August.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
hello every body, been busy myself no time to play , been lurking though 90L looks interesting bears watching.
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Quoting Levi32:


I greatly dislike the accuracy of that product...there are no westerly winds here.


Hi Levi,

The action is picking up fairly quickly now. With all the crazy weather world wide who knows what we may see this year. I was in Boston yesterday and it felt like an oven.

July has been quite active in the tropics for what is generally a fairly quiet month historically and this may not bode well for the rest of the season.
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Quoting Levi32:


Diurnal convective minimum before sunset is different than the diurnal pressure cycles that we talk about in the buoy data. A minimum pressure occurs near 4am and 4pm local time every day (against a background of nearly flat pressure trends), most pronounced over the low latitudes where the sun is more directly overhead. The pressure tends to not start rising again until after 6pm local time, and right now it is 8 minutes until 6pm near 90L.
So does the convective cycle peak before sunrise and sunset? I've heard its right at sunrise and sunset and also just after. I suppose it doesn't really matter since its only a difference of about half an hour but just wondering.

Quoting Levi32:


Shear is really not the issue that will be inhibiting this feature. Possible subsidence from the high to the north and land interaction are the main obstacles here. Wind shear will be fine for most of this system's journey.
yea true, but I think that will be more a result of weak winds aloft, rather than an anticyclone sitting on top of the system. at least that's what the models have showing.
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18z Early Cycle NHC model tracks
Invest90
Statistical/Simple Models (CLIPER,BAMs,LBAR,other Statistical Models)




Dynamic Models (More sophisticated models)




Early Model Wind Forecasts

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Quoting Patrap:
90L 18Z Multiplatform Satellite Surface Wind Analysis




Currently, this product combines information from five data sources to create a mid-level (near 700 hPa) wind analysis using a variational approach described in Knaff and DeMaria (2006). The resulting mid-level winds are then adjusted to the surface applying a very simple single column approach. Over the ocean an adjustment factor is applied, which is a function of radius from the center ranging from 0.9 to 0.7, and the winds are turned 20 degrees toward low pressure. Over land, the oceanic winds are reduced by an additional 20% and turned an additional 20 degrees toward low pressure.

The five datasets currently used are the ASCAT scatterometer, which is adjusted upward to 700 hPa in the same manner as the surface winds are adjusted downward, feature track winds in the mid-levels from the operational satellite centers, 2-d flight-level winds estimated from infrared imagery (see Mueller et al 2006 ) and 2-d winds created from Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AMSU)- derived height fields and solving the non-linear balance equations as described in Bessho et al (2006). Past analyses also made use of the QuickSCAT scatterometer (i.e., prior to November 2009), but this satellite is no longer producing observations of surface vector winds.

Each of the input data are shown in subpanels following the analysis (i.e., storm-relative). Shown are AMSU winds, Cloud-drift/IR/WV winds, IR-proxy winds and Scatterometer winds; QuikSCAT, when available for past analyses (BLUE) and ASCAT (RED). All input data in these panels has been reduced to a 10-m land or oceanic exposure depending on the location (i.e., non-surface data has been reduced to a 10-m exposure).

How good are the wind estimates? Here is the verification based upon 2007 data . These statistics were based on 1) H*Wind data when available and 2) best track wind radii estimates from NHC. In interpreting the wind radii verification it is important to not that the zero wind radii are included in the verification, which both skews and inflates the MAE verification statistics. Note however detection is improved over climatology provided by Knaff et al. (2007).


I greatly dislike the accuracy of that product...there are no westerly winds here.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
90L/INV/XX
MARK
17.79N/68.87W
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Quoting kmanislander:
Hi Folks

First time on for a couple of weeks, been busy travellling etc :-)

Watching 90L but so far no immediate threat. A lot depends on the track from where it is now. A flatter track to the South of Jamaica would allow for some development once beyond 75W. Anything further to the N close to Hispaniola and passing between Jamaica and Cuba would deter development. The GFDL and HWRF seem pretty bullish on this system but too aggressive IMO based upon what we have out there now.

Another interesting feature is out near 35 W. Although convection is weak at this time the 850 vort is looking quite impressive. ASCAT this morning shows a fairly well defined surface low with winds from all quads except open to the SW. This bears watching once it gets to 50W.


Hey Kman, good to see you on.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
90L 18Z Multiplatform Satellite Surface Wind Analysis




Currently, this product combines information from five data sources to create a mid-level (near 700 hPa) wind analysis using a variational approach described in Knaff and DeMaria (2006). The resulting mid-level winds are then adjusted to the surface applying a very simple single column approach. Over the ocean an adjustment factor is applied, which is a function of radius from the center ranging from 0.9 to 0.7, and the winds are turned 20 degrees toward low pressure. Over land, the oceanic winds are reduced by an additional 20% and turned an additional 20 degrees toward low pressure.

The five datasets currently used are the ASCAT scatterometer, which is adjusted upward to 700 hPa in the same manner as the surface winds are adjusted downward, feature track winds in the mid-levels from the operational satellite centers, 2-d flight-level winds estimated from infrared imagery (see Mueller et al 2006 ) and 2-d winds created from Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit (AMSU)- derived height fields and solving the non-linear balance equations as described in Bessho et al (2006). Past analyses also made use of the QuickSCAT scatterometer (i.e., prior to November 2009), but this satellite is no longer producing observations of surface vector winds.

Each of the input data are shown in subpanels following the analysis (i.e., storm-relative). Shown are AMSU winds, Cloud-drift/IR/WV winds, IR-proxy winds and Scatterometer winds; QuikSCAT, when available for past analyses (BLUE) and ASCAT (RED). All input data in these panels has been reduced to a 10-m land or oceanic exposure depending on the location (i.e., non-surface data has been reduced to a 10-m exposure).

How good are the wind estimates? Here is the verification based upon 2007 data . These statistics were based on 1) H*Wind data when available and 2) best track wind radii estimates from NHC. In interpreting the wind radii verification it is important to not that the zero wind radii are included in the verification, which both skews and inflates the MAE verification statistics. Note however detection is improved over climatology provided by Knaff et al. (2007).
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Hi Folks

First time on for a couple of weeks, been busy travellling etc :-)

Watching 90L but so far no immediate threat. A lot depends on the track from where it is now. A flatter track to the South of Jamaica would allow for some development once beyond 75W. Anything further to the N close to Hispaniola and passing between Jamaica and Cuba would deter development. The GFDL and HWRF seem pretty bullish on this system but too aggressive IMO based upon what we have out there now.

Another interesting feature is out near 35 W. Although convection is weak at this time the 850 vort is looking quite impressive. ASCAT this morning shows a fairly well defined surface low with winds from all quads except open to the SW. This bears watching once it gets to 50W.
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Nice animation on 90L

Link
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The orange dashed line is an approximation of the trade wind flow (based on satellite) around the tropical wave axis, which is in green.

Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
Don't write off 90L off yet.. Lots of intensity models bring it up to TS strength, and some hurricane strength.



The GFDL model made this a Cat 2 hurricane.. We will have to see if it continues.

Odd to see it organize again around DMIN. Weird how it organized at DMIN, broke down around DMAX, and organized around DMIN again. I guess that just goes to show you how the factors aren't that simple.
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Enhanced Infrared (IR) Imagery (4 km Mercator)

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Quoting stormpetrol:
Personally on satelite presentation 90L looks more organized this evening than it did last evening when it was up to 30%, I think it will be bumped up to 20% again, possibly 30%
yes and on ir starting to looking more round
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Hello all! 90L is going to blow up in western Carib. But if there is no breakdown in the ridge he'll be headed straight for Mexico. I say bumped up to 40% next advisory.

Also, levi32 your tidbits are great and very informative! Thanks
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Ok i see, Thanks.
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Personally on satelite presentation 90L looks more organized this evening than it did last evening when it was up to 30%, I think it will be bumped up to 20% again, possibly 30%
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Quoting weathermanwannabe:


I would definately give it least a 20% at 8:00 if Haiti was not in the way and I am sure this land interaction is factoring into the current analysis....I would be very impressed, and not willing to bet against future development, if is can keep firing convection after getting past Cuba.
It looks to be too far south for any interaction with Haiti. Just the outer parts of the convection should reach that far north.
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Quoting hotrods:
Intresting on the marine discussion, sw-north atlantic.It mentions a tropical wave then maybe tropical cyclone around the bahamas is this the wave behind 90l?


Hmmm? I think they mean 90l.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 245
90L could easily still become a problem, but again, any development will stay slow, as the system is now a low-amplitude wave, and still broad as it has been it's whole life thus far. If it can avoid interacting with all of the big Caribbean islands, it may still try to spin up. This show of convection during the daytime in the fast trade wind environment of the eastern Caribbean shows that the atmosphere is unstable enough to support mischief.
Member Since: November 24, 2005 Posts: 635 Comments: 26654
Quoting Saltydogbwi1:


ohh Ivan thats a bad word!...3 months no power at my house...I still remember how quiet it was the day we got power back and everyone switched off the portable gensets ;-)
Yes. My grandson was 6 and the day we got power back it was so exciting to him like he had never seen lights before.
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Intresting on the marine discussion, sw-north atlantic.It mentions a tropical wave then maybe tropical cyclone around the bahamas is this the wave behind 90l?
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Quoting WeatherNerdPR:

In Puerto Rico, it's the opposite. People hear "Tropical Storm Approaching PR" and they start panicking. One excellent example would be Tropical Storms Ana and Erika, they fizzled before they got to the island, after causing chaos in supermarkets.
I wish most jamaicans were like that, during tropical storm nicole we had as much as 37 inches in some areas including 13 deaths. The deaths were due to lack of preparedness.
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strong 850mb vort with tropical wave near 9N 33W Moving west at 25 mph. low wind shear of 5 knots. very little convection with this area. the cyclonic turning is not visjble at the surface from IRsat pics, but could be seen on W/V IMAGERY. THIS WAVE COULD BE A PLAYER DOWN THE ROAD.
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Interesting, but based on what happened yesterday, this convection could diminish at anytime.
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2km Storm Relative IR Imagery with BD Enhancement Curve



The same infrared imagery shown in the earth relative framework is displayed in a storm relative framework, with a 2km resolution and enhanced with the "BD Curve" which is useful for directly inferring intensity via the Dvorak Enhanced IR (EIR) technique. Scaling is provided by two lightly hatched circles around the center. The two circles have radii of 1 and 2 degrees latitude, respectively.
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Quoting atmoaggie:
Honestly looking better around the wave axis:


Well see if it sustains.


I would definately give it least a 20% at 8:00 if Haiti was not in the way and I am sure this land interaction is factoring into the current analysis....I would be very impressed, and not willing to bet against future development, if is can keep firing convection after getting past Cuba.
Member Since: August 8, 2006 Posts: 0 Comments: 9222
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Quoting atmoaggie:
Honestly looking better around the wave axis:


Well see if it sustains.

I say 90L center is at 16N 65W on the dot moving WWNW
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Quoting belizeit:
Link Heres your floter
Thank you. Sure looks to be trying to organize IMO.
Member Since: October 9, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 8392
I wouldn't write it off yet...

MARINE WEATHER DISCUSSION
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL
300 PM EDT SAT JUL 23 2011

MARINE WEATHER DISCUSSION FOR THE GULF OF MEXICO...CARIBBEAN SEA
AND TROPICAL N ATLC...AND SOUTHWEST NORTH ATLC S OF 31N W OF 55W.

GULF OF MEXICO...
HIGH PRES RIDGE ALONG 29N MAINTAINS LIGHT AND VARIABLE WINDS AND
SLIGHT SEAS N OF 28N WHILE LIGHT TO MODERATE E-SE WINDS COVER S
OF 28N. TROPICAL WAVE MOVES ACROSS BAY OF CAMPECHE SQUEEZE PRES
GRADIENT PROMPTING FRESH S-SE BREEZE W OF 96W TODAY AND TONIGHT.
WINDS DIMINISH MON AS TROPICAL WAVE MOVES INLAND. RIDGE REMAINS
ALONG 27N THROUGH WED WHEN STRONG TROPICAL WAVE...POSSIBLE
TROPICAL CYCLONE...APPROACHES SE PART OF CENTRAL GULF.

SW N ATLC...
HIGH PRES RIDGE ALONG 30N AS STRONG TROPICAL WAVE MOVES ALONG
ITS SOUTHERN PERIPHERY. WAVE EXPECTED TO AFFECT EXTREME SE PART
OF ZONE TONIGHT AND SUN. TROPICAL WAVE COULD POSSIBLY DEVELOP
INTO A TROPICAL CYCLONE WITHIN NEXT 48 HOURS. PRES GRADIENT
TIGHTEN BETWEEN WAVE AND RIDGE INCREASING WINDS S OF 24N. WAVE
OR POSSIBLE TROPICAL CYCLONE MOVE THROUGH SE AND CENTRAL
BAHAMAS MON NIGHT AND BE W OF AREA LATE TUE.

CARIBBEAN SEA AND TROPICAL N ATLC W OF 55W...
LARGE AREA OF SIGNIFICANT UPPER LEVEL DIVERGENCE OVER GREATER
ANTILLES EXPECTED TO CLOSELY INTERACT WITH TROPICAL WAVE NOW
APPROACHING EASTERN CARIBBEAN. DEEP CONVECTION AND ASSOCIATED
TEMPORARY INTENSIFICATION OF WIND AND SEAS EXPECTED THROUGH ITS
PATH ACROSS CENTRAL CARIBBEAN AND INTO NORTHWESTERN ZONE.
FAVORABLE UPPER LEVEL CONDITIONS MAY TURN WAVE INTO A TROPICAL
CYCLONE WITHIN 48 HRS. BUT EVEN IF IT DOES NOT...NUMEROUS
HEAVY CONVECTION EXPECTED IN VICINITY OF NORTHERN ISLANDS OF
PUERTO RICO AND HISPANIOLA TONIGHT AND SUN WITH ATTENDANT
FLOODING AND MUDSLIDES. SYSTEM MOVE W-NW INTO EASTERN CUBA AND
JAMAICA MON AND TUE AND EXPECTED TO BE OUT OF BASIN WED. WIND
AND SEAS ABATE AFTER WAVE PASSAGE UNTIL REBUILDING CENTRAL ATLC
HIGH PRES TIGHTENS GRADIENT WED AND BEYOND.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 0 Comments: 245
Quoting neutralenso:

Levi didnt you say that now there is a pattern where these waves head toward the US? and why are the models showing now a mexico hit? before it was texas now mexico? what are your thoughts?


There is no cyclone yet. The models will continue to move between Mexico and Florida for awhile yet (and possibly beyond that). Once there is a cyclone (if one forms) then we can start getting a little more confidence. Plus, I hope that NOAA puts a plane up (not the hurricane hunters, that is different) to sample the atmosphere in the region. That should help greatly.
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Quoting stormpetrol:


Correct with Gilbert lost of power at most 3 days here in South Sound, with Ivan 5 weeks to day we got back power!BTW you gettin any rain EE, not a drop here in South Sound :(
Nope, no rain. During Gilbert I lived in Central GT and we only lost power for a couple hours and phone only went off for about a minute. With Ivan we were without power in East End from September 12-November 28. It was not nice. North Side got theirs back about a week after us.
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Honestly looking better around the wave axis:


Well see if it sustains.
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Quoting stormpetrol:


Correct with Gilbert lost of power at most 3 days here in South Sound, with Ivan 5 weeks to day we got back power!BTW you gettin any rain EE, not a drop here in South Sound :(


ohh Ivan thats a bad word!...3 months no power at my house...I still remember how quiet it was the day we got power back and everyone switched off the portable gensets ;-)
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Quoting nigel20:
I live in jamaica and over the last couple of years we had some near misses, but sooner or later we will get one soon(major hurricane). The people of jamaica are usualy sceptical of iminent treats, namely Ivan and Dean.

In Puerto Rico, it's the opposite. People hear "Tropical Storm Approaching PR" and they start panicking. One excellent example would be Tropical Storms Ana and Erika, they fizzled before they got to the island, after causing chaos in supermarkets.
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Quoting stormwatcherCI:
It would definitely help if the NHC would put up a floater.
Link Heres your floter
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Quoting neutralenso:

Levi didnt you say that now there is a pattern where these waves head toward the US? and why are the models showing now a mexico hit? before it was texas now mexico? what are your thoughts?


After 90L weakened, many of the reliable global models haven't been doing much with it. The remaining models like the LBAR and BAM are not trustworthy
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312. JRRP

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Quoting nigel20:
I live in jamaica and over the last couple of years we had some near misses, but sooner or later we will get one soon(major hurricane). The people of jamaica are usualy sceptical of iminent treats, namely Ivan and Dean.


I'm sure the same goes with Tampa.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.